Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Passing Grade

When a challenge comes my way, I always figure it's a test. Either G-d wants to know how I'll react to the latest outrage in my life (and He's keeping score), or I'm testing myself to see how I do. Either way, there's only one outcome: you either pass or fail.

So when a dear friend of mine expressed her wishes to certain people she knows, they too were being tested. They were being tested on their level Ahavas Yisroel, their love of a fellow Jew. It's the milk we're all nursed on; it's the Rebbe's deepest desire and greatest exaltation. And you just don't love your fellow Jew, you help them as well.

Unfortunately, in the case of my dear friend, the people being tested failed miserably. When my friend came to them, face to face, to request something, they said one thing, yet did another. And she is very pained by it all.

Which pains me. It's hard to stand by and see someone you care for suffer. It's hard to watch people you know fail so obvious a test. People who should know better. People who say one thing, like how we all need to increase our Ahavas Yisroel, and do another.

But making mistakes is what it means to be a human being. None of Judaism's patriarchs or matriarchs, prophets and sages, were perfect. But they were still role models -- they showed us that it's the struggle that counts, as well as the outcome.

So I stand before my fellow human beings today, still struggling. The outcome, well, we'll have to wait and see.

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